Episode 16 - Samantha & Maria McKavanagh

Work/life realities in the start up tech world

In a quest to dig deeper into the complication relationship between happiness and tech, I wanted to get to the heart of what's really working in companies and what's not when it comes to technological distractions, company culture and employee wellbeing and development.  

First in the series is Maria is the COO of Verve. Verve produces a home energy assistant that can turn your home appliances into smart products. The Verve box allows appliances to tell you when they're starting to break, and to communicate with engineers who can arrive to fix them with the correct parts.  Maria has a wide range of experience in aerospace, defence and consumer electronics before taking on the role of COO. Maria is in charge of hiring, employee wellbeing all the way to pitching for new investment. Verve has 20 employees so far and has doubled in the last year and hopes to double again in the next year. With fast growth on the agenda how do they make the space to tackle the challenges of scaling company culture, technological distractions and mindfulness in this vibrant start up ....listen to find out more!

In this episode you will learn:

0.51 Who is Maria?

3.46 What is verve like as a company

9.14 Taking on employee suggestions to improve company culture

12.02 The effect of remote working on team dynamics

23.12 Keeping the company connected as it grows 

26.41 How happy is Verve? 

28.46 What makes Maria happy

Links mentioned in the episode:

Boat exercise


Minute of mindfulness


@mother_pukka on Instagram for Flex Appeal

Scrum Book


How Google hire:


Happiness Measurement (we use the questions at the bottom which are aimed at measuring morale)


Enjoyed listening to Maria? Fab! Find out more about her here:

Website:  https://verv.energy

Twitter and Instagram: @mmckav @verv_energy